Does change bring out the animal in you?

Everyone reacts to change in different ways, forget star signs, discover which animal you are when you alter course

Change is a certainty. Just as Pre-Socratic philosopher Heraclitus stated, “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it is not the same river and he is not the same man.”

To help deal with this river of life, it’s widely accepted that self-knowledge is a key factor in embracing the flow. To lighten the topic for a ‘change’ (haha) let me introduce you to a few of my characters of animalistic change.

The Deer

You can identify deer by the wideness of their eyes when they get the scent that change is on its way. Nail biting to the wick is evident. Further discussion is pointless – it brings a wide-eyed stare and gaping mouth because mentally they are deep in the forest camouflaged by the trees.

They have to come back though and when they do they are panting and speaking in half-sentence questions of disbelief while they teeter on their little doey feet ready to run again.

Are you a deer? Take up yoga and please learn to breathe.

The Lion

You know the type (maybe you’re one of them?) the news is out that something is going to get in the way of achieving a five-year plan, they have to alter objectives, tinker with goals, miss deadlines. They start to roar and gnash their teeth. Spectators – watch out for the razor-sharp claws!

If you are a lion, please go to an anger management class – NOW. Your overreaction looks stupid and you’re scaring the pride.

The Ostrich

Do you find yourself seeing change out of the corner of your eye but choose to ignore it for comfort’s sake? Does that niggling feeling that you’re going to have to face turmoil make you stick your head in the sand? Then you’re definitely an ostrich.

Maybe changing your pattern of ignorance could bring about a whole new you? What’s the worse thing that could happen if you listen to the warning signs, recognise what’s about to change and make a list of ways to tackle the new path?

Why should you do this? Because becoming a person who’s leading the flock is a good thing.

The Cat

The curious cats… Their eavesdropping ensures they have the latest news and stay close to feeding hands. Theirs is the belief that they can control the flow if only they know early enough. Lithe and ready they tread their path lightly through the garden of change and silently alter tact as rumour dictates.

Be careful if you’re leading or are in love with a cat. Their loyalty ways with the wind – one moment they’re standing on tiptoes as they smile up at you with a stiff tail and a soft mew and the next minute, when fright of rumors takes, they start hissing and spitting and climbing to the tops of the trees.

If you’re a cat – let go and stop drinking coffee, it’s making you jumpy. Yes everything’s changing but your over-anticipation is getting creepy.

The Sloth

As I’m sure Aesop would agree, while the cat is the hare of our animalistic change characters, the sloth must be the tortoise (sorry for any animal confusion).

They just keep holding tight to that growing tree, staying above the river of change with calm sleepy intelligence.

Could you be one? Well, as much as I adore sloths, waking up occasionally and cleaning that smelly body of yours in the rapids could lead to a livelier, happier existence.

Any resemblances? Or are you more of a chimera – the fabled fire-spouting monster with a lion’s head, a serpent’s tail and a goat’s body? My descriptive powers are at a loss…

No matter which animal characteristics you have – I wish you (and myself) the best of luck with change – this forever flowing – sometimes rapid, sometimes calm – constant of life.

Picture featured above: Bellerophon and Pegasus fight the monster Chimera

Thanks to:

Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. (1789 – 1819).Bellerophon and Pegasus fight the monster Chimera. Retrieved from

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